Sartopia: Los Angeles
USC School of Architecture
Location: Los Angeles, CA
A series of programmatic blocks containing manufacturing, housing, retail, recreation, and education come together to form the overall mass of the building. Inserted into this mass is a series of void spaces which carve out both horizontal and vertical courtyards. From there, a network of tubes is deployed throughout, defining space and circulation, creating outdoor areas, as well as bringing light and airflow into the living and working spaces, a clear departure from historical factory models. A final web of production weaves its way through the building, and unlike factories and tenement housing projects of the past, this building’s transparent makeup of glass, yellow perforated metal and fritted glass do not hide away but instead proudly display the production here for all to see as an integral part of Los Angeles and its history.
Taking its cue from recent workplaces such as the “Googleplex”, Sartopia aims to create an all-encompassing environment of working, living, and playing for those workers who would not normally have the opportunity to be in such an encouraging and positive environment. Inside the building, garment production spaces are intertwined with recreational areas, housing is offered for those who are in need of a suitable residence, while classrooms and training areas offer workers a chance to gain new skills relevant to their desired futures.